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  1. #501
    Happy Dancer uumlau's Avatar
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    I really liked this post, OA.

    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeAppled View Post
    The best way I can get my head around an intellectual description of Ni is to see it as choosing a perspective, not because its factually the most correct or evident, because it seems the most consistent with some internally sourced archetypes.
    This is so close to being dead-on accurate. It only has one flaw, which you can see if you compare it to Si. Si references internally stored archetypes, too. However, Si doesn't CHOOSE them: they were created by experience.

    Similarly, Ni doesn't "choose" the perspective it perceives, as much as it might seem like it to others. Rather, think of both Si and Ni as libraries of experiences. Si stores the concrete, literal versions of those experiences, but doesn't tend to keep functional/purpose/meaning-based attributes of it. Ni stores a more functional/purpose/meaning-based version of experiences, but tends to lose track of the concrete specifics.

    Both Si and Ni can quickly pull up their respective libraries, and quickly rifle through the index to pull up the most relevant past experience.

    So what Ni does is look at reality, e.g., at a problem, and immediately sees "what kind of problem" it is, pulls out the Ni-experience that relates to it, and it is nigh-instantly solved. (Just as if you'd asked Si about a fact, and the Si individual immediately recites the correct fact to you.)

    Ni doesn't remember facts. It remembers how to solve "that kind of problem" in a very abstract way. As you might notice, putting "that kind of problem" into more concrete terms is very difficult.

    Ne also chooses a perspective, not which is most evident and certainly not the most factual, but which seems to have the most potential to create something novel and/or something connected to a Ji concept (because these don't exist in a vacuum from the other functions). This is why NPs seem the most disconnected from reality or "absent-minded" or "dreamy" because it appears to be wishful thinking from the outside.
    You are going to have more of an understanding of Ne than I do, but I don't think Ne chooses a perspective either.

    Perhaps the difference is that you are judging dom and I am perceiving dom? You always end up choosing what you look at and how you look at it, perhaps? A blindness of Ni doms is that we don't really feel like we're "choosing" anything, that it's just there, but it probably looks like a "choice" to others.

    Ni looks delusional too, but in the way where someone frames reality to be whatever it is they want it to be, with complete disregard for actual facts, so that no matter an outcome, it is what they predicted, because it can be framed that way.
    Again, the notion of "whatever it is they want it to be" is off. This is how it looks to others, not to oneself. What you are experiencing perhaps from other Ni types is that they appear to want to change whatever it is you believe to be true, and you're immediate thought is likely, "But that's reality. You don't get to change that."

    The reality is that they see a different reality than you do. They're looking at a different set of interconnections that you don't readily see, just as you see interconnections that Ni doms don't readily see.

    Ni doms don't "choose" that perspective that they apply. It's what they see. It is their reality. AND they don't often realize that other people don't look at the world that way. Self-awareness for an INTJ is when we realize that no, we aren't that smart, but rather we simply don't look at the world the way everyone else seems to. Most people don't look at the world and see a complex system of cause-and-effect that can be altered in fundamental ways. One surprise for me was that what most people view as static, I see as entirely flexible and changeable. Conversely, what most people view as flexible and changeable I see as almost-immutable law, e.g., analogous to the laws of physics.

    That's sort of like wishful thinking too, but the change is in the internal perspective, whereas with Ne, the possibilities are out there, and it's a matter of you being able to chase them, cultivate them, and create the change outside of yourself. For the Ne type, if the outcome is not turning out to be the potential initially seen, then they abandon and move on, whereas Ni types can stubbornly stick to it and insist it is what they said it would be.
    Interesting perspective, here. I think what you are encountering is the different visions of the world, again, which see different kinds of things as mutable/immutable.

    Quick and dirty function-theory version: To Ne/Si, the concrete is immutable, the abstract is mutable. To Ni/Se, the abstract is immutable, the concrete is mutable.

    The Ni type seems less fickle because of this, but they are really abandoning an internal perspective in favor of a new one which shapes reality as they want it to be (or which gives them a sense of control of its outcomes),
    More likely, circumstances changed (Se is mutable) which drew up a different Ni-experience-model-abstraction. To you, it looks like they just totally changed their mind, and don't even remember that you had just proven them wrong, for example. What really happened is that you believe there is only one context (Si is immutable), therefore the Ni dom just did a 180-degree logical reversal.

    My ENFP ex and I had some really weird arguments along these lines early in our relationship, until after an explanation of mine she realized, "Hey, waitaminute! You changed context. You're not even talking about what I'm talking about now!" To which I replied, "Yes. Exactly. Why wasn't that obvious before?"

    You might wonder how that fits into Ni being immutable. Ni is still immutable because the old context didn't just disappear. It still exists in abstract, but doesn't apply now in the concrete instance. If the context switched back, you'd hear the same arguments as before the original switch. Further, there can be kind of a "chaos theory" kind of effect: a slight change in circumstances can produce a radically different conclusion even when maintaining the same Ni-understanding. Physics and math are full of things like this, where the math doesn't change at all, but a slightly different input value produces a significantly different result.
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  2. #502
    ⒺⓉⒷ Eric B's Avatar
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    No, Ni or any other perception function doesn't "choose" anything. Only judgment does that.

    I'm now wondering, if an example of Ni is when we come up with an idea, and it seems to fit so well, yet there's this sense that we might be missing something, or even overlooking something that collapses the whole premise; even though this factor is not yet known. Ne ignores this and hopes it goes away (for all that matters is that it can fit, and after all, nothing solid disproving it is being presented), while an Ni perspective would say "let's look at this and see what it really is".
    Ni was described to me as "giving a voice" to something that [perhaps] could not be articulated, and I didn't fully get this at first, but then it suddenly dawned on me that it might be describing this subconscious sense of something missing, or things being "too good to be true".

    Does that accurately describe Ni dom. experience?
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  3. #503
    Vaguely Precise Seymour's Avatar
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    Meh... I'd say as far as filtering (which is, one admits, a kind of judging) it might go (least filtering to most): Se Ne Ni Si

    I'd say Se being less filtering than Si is fairly indisputable.

    Whether Ne vs Ni is more filtering kind of depends on perspective. I'd say Ne generates a large number of (single hop at a time) alternatives. Then a judging function (Ti or Fi) prunes from there, but in a way that pretty invested once it chooses.

    By comparison, I'd say that Ni tends to filter down to a single (or small number) of likely "nearly inevitable" or "convergent" perspectives. Then Te or Fe prunes (in a way that is fairly flexible in terms of new input) from there.
    Last edited by Seymour; 10-30-2014 at 01:37 PM.
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  4. #504
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    The reality is that they see a different reality than you do. They're looking at a different set of interconnections that you don't readily see, just as you see interconnections that Ni doms don't readily see.
    I remember from a fairly young age kind of inherently appreciating that there are interconnections I don't readily see and I believe that they exist for others even if I don't see them or can prove they exist (abstract is mutable?). But this rustic-looking table in front of me? A table. The first things in my mind are not an emblem of economy or a symbol of rural heritage or representation of anything else, simply a table with specific qualities (concrete is immutable?) If you put the table into a different set of circumstances it does not alter the physical reality of that table. It might change how we appreciate or use the table, but the table is essentially compositionally consistent (unless someone sets it on fire or performs some other distortion to serve a new purpose). Is that kind of what you mean? Or drop an example on top of that to contrast this?

    I find it challenging when some Ni doms believe they do see the interconnections available more exclusively to other types, because they believe that "Ni sees everything". (As above, I don't "see" everyone's interconnections but am ok with the idea that they do exist and I can provide lots of space for them to exist? Like, I'm ok with a whole lot of perspectives floating around without distilling that further?)

    And Si doms? Because there's no internal reference for something one can't actually perceive, it cannot even possibly exist - there's just seemingly way less stretch in there.

    To Ne/Si, the concrete is immutable, the abstract is mutable. To Ni/Se, the abstract is immutable, the concrete is mutable.
    Thanks for that. Good stuff to think about, I want to imagine more about the concrete being comfortably mutable. Those types of considerations, when my physical reality is threatened, really can stress me out. I've experienced depersonalization and derealization and it's distressing to lose that sense of a concrete perception, but what brings balance back is not minding and being ok with that kind of "distortion". It's an appreciation for a kind of timeless sense of time and space not contingent on here and now.

    eta: I edited and added more to this, sorry if it's appreciably changed since a previous read.
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  5. #505

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    Thread: Ni - What the hell is.
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  6. #506
    Happy Dancer uumlau's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric B View Post
    No, Ni or any other perception function doesn't "choose" anything. Only judgment does that.

    I'm now wondering, if an example of Ni is when we come up with an idea, and it seems to fit so well, yet there's this sense that we might be missing something, or even overlooking something that collapses the whole premise; even though this factor is not yet known. Ne ignores this and hopes it goes away (for all that matters is that it can fit, and after all, nothing solid disproving it is being presented), while an Ni perspective would say "let's look at this and see what it really is".
    Ni was described to me as "giving a voice" to something that [perhaps] could not be articulated, and I didn't fully get this at first, but then it suddenly dawned on me that it might be describing this subconscious sense of something missing, or things being "too good to be true".

    Does that accurately describe Ni dom. experience?
    Sort of. Let's classify two different kinds of problems that Ni doms might encounter. One kind is the "visible problem". Everyone knows there is a problem. Everyone knows it needs a solution. The other kind is the "invisible problem". No one knows there is a problem. There is no apparent need for a solution.

    When an Ni dom sees an "invisible problem", e.g., that entire network of stuff that Ni doms see but Ne/Si types don't see, we see the problem AND we see the solution.

    To an Ni dom, "invisible problems" look like a puzzle that has been completed, but for a single piece missing, and that piece is in our hands. When we explain things to the rest of the world, we either get the "wow, that's genius! The picture is so much better with your creative addition!" response, or we get the "That's how it's supposed to be. You can't change that!" response. The former is the source of Ni's reputation for amazing insight, when the reality is that it's just obvious to us. The latter is the source of Ni's reputation for arrogance.

    We spend most of our time trying to convince others that there even IS a problem that needs a solution. Before the problem gets solved, everyone is wondering why the hell the Ni dom wants to change anything. "Why do you things always have to be YOUR way?" they ask. Once the problem gets solved, everyone can see that things work WAY better now, but they tend not to know how they got better. The new way becomes the new normal, the new concrete Si world.

    You'd think things would be easier for Ni doms to explain their handling of the visible problem to others, but no, it isn't. Others see the visible problem, but usually the reason that the visible problem exists is because no one knows how to fix it. The Ni dom sees exactly how to fix it, but when others are told about the suggested solution, their response is, "You can't do that! That will make things even worse." The reason is that the Ni solution necessarily breaks the Si model of the world that the other people hold. This is precisely why the visible problem hasn't been solved yet: any solution that might work has a huge - almost political - resistance to being fixed.

    Often, there are very legitimate reasons that there is a lot of resistance. Si types are quite aware that altering a complex system can have severe ramifications, and are thus extremely cautious about changing anything. An Ni dom should exercise a lot of due diligence to make sure that the new solution doesn't break things badly elsewhere. This is where some Ni doms can get a bad reputation, as they "fix" the apparent problem, but then the consequences cascade and create a bunch of new problems.

    But if the Ni dom is actually good at doing what they do, they get the opposite reputation, and a level of trust from non-Ni types that the Ni dom is actually good at understanding the whole system and makes it work better. From personal experience, it takes years to get that level of trust, which is why I don't like to change jobs too often.

    To summarize, I think the Ne/Si types sense the problems that don't have a solution, and try to ignore those, as you suggest, instead working on the problems they can solve. I don't think they can sense the "invisible problems" as I describe them. They instead see a working system that shouldn't be touched, because in their own experience, every time it gets touched, it breaks.

    ...

    In the field of software architecture, there are reams of books on how to create robust designs that are resilient to change, most of which read like an INTJ wrote them. Lots of software out there is not resilient to change: changing it at all tends to break things that you didn't touch. This fragile software is generally written in a very concrete way (they actually USE this word!), where it's step 1, step 2, etc. The robust software, however, is very abstract (they actually USE this word, too!), where the abstractions keep the individual pieces from affecting each other, thus you can change one piece and not worry about breaking the rest.
    An argument is two people sharing their ignorance.

    A discussion is two people sharing their understanding, even when they disagree.

  7. #507

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seymour View Post
    Meh... I'd say as far as filtering (which is, one admits, a kind of judging) it might go (least filtering to most): Se Ne Ni Si

    I'd say Se being less filtering than Si is fairly indisputable.

    Whether Ne vs Ni is more filtering kind of depends on perspective. I'd say Ne generates a large number of (single hop at a time) alternatives. Then a judging function (Ti or Fi) prunes from there, but in a way that pretty invested once it chooses.

    By comparison, I'd say that Ni tends to filter down to a single (or small number) of likely "nearly inevitable" or "convergent" perspectives. Then Te or Fe prunes (in a way fairly flexible in terms of new input) from there.
    Problem solved. Simple, comprehensible, short.

    Close thread please.

  8. #508
    ⒺⓉⒷ Eric B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    Sort of. Let's classify two different kinds of problems that Ni doms might encounter. One kind is the "visible problem". Everyone knows there is a problem. Everyone knows it needs a solution. The other kind is the "invisible problem". No one knows there is a problem. There is no apparent need for a solution.

    When an Ni dom sees an "invisible problem", e.g., that entire network of stuff that Ni doms see but Ne/Si types don't see, we see the problem AND we see the solution.

    To an Ni dom, "invisible problems" look like a puzzle that has been completed, but for a single piece missing, and that piece is in our hands. When we explain things to the rest of the world, we either get the "wow, that's genius! The picture is so much better with your creative addition!" response, or we get the "That's how it's supposed to be. You can't change that!" response. The former is the source of Ni's reputation for amazing insight, when the reality is that it's just obvious to us. The latter is the source of Ni's reputation for arrogance.

    We spend most of our time trying to convince others that there even IS a problem that needs a solution. Before the problem gets solved, everyone is wondering why the hell the Ni dom wants to change anything. "Why do you things always have to be YOUR way?" they ask. Once the problem gets solved, everyone can see that things work WAY better now, but they tend not to know how they got better. The new way becomes the new normal, the new concrete Si world.

    You'd think things would be easier for Ni doms to explain their handling of the visible problem to others, but no, it isn't. Others see the visible problem, but usually the reason that the visible problem exists is because no one knows how to fix it. The Ni dom sees exactly how to fix it, but when others are told about the suggested solution, their response is, "You can't do that! That will make things even worse." The reason is that the Ni solution necessarily breaks the Si model of the world that the other people hold. This is precisely why the visible problem hasn't been solved yet: any solution that might work has a huge - almost political - resistance to being fixed.

    Often, there are very legitimate reasons that there is a lot of resistance. Si types are quite aware that altering a complex system can have severe ramifications, and are thus extremely cautious about changing anything. An Ni dom should exercise a lot of due diligence to make sure that the new solution doesn't break things badly elsewhere. This is where some Ni doms can get a bad reputation, as they "fix" the apparent problem, but then the consequences cascade and create a bunch of new problems.

    But if the Ni dom is actually good at doing what they do, they get the opposite reputation, and a level of trust from non-Ni types that the Ni dom is actually good at understanding the whole system and makes it work better. From personal experience, it takes years to get that level of trust, which is why I don't like to change jobs too often.

    To summarize, I think the Ne/Si types sense the problems that don't have a solution, and try to ignore those, as you suggest, instead working on the problems they can solve. I don't think they can sense the "invisible problems" as I describe them. They instead see a working system that shouldn't be touched, because in their own experience, every time it gets touched, it breaks.
    That sounds like a pretty good description. (And I had been told of how the Ni perspective comes in handy for when a system is already in place and it needs to be improved in order to meet a particular goal, like streamlining and tossing out what's irrelevant and making things more efficient. Sounds like cartoon "robotic" science, like Dexter's "Ultrabot 3000", or the Twilight Zone episode about "inefficiency").

    I'm trying to make sure I'm relaying correctly where the "invisible problems" come from, or what it really is. Ni is described as dealing in "unconscious" stuff, but then that word has other uses. N of both attitudes are called "unconscious", as is any introverted function, and of course undeveloped functions (e.g. "shadows"), and even a dominant function that becomes so "second nature", it too actually loses "consciousness" in a way. This is one thing that makes Jung hard to really grasp easily.

    So I'm thinking that my "too good to be true" sense might be my [limited] experience of the "invisible problem". (Which you seem to be saying we don't sense at all). In other words, it's just a "hunch" (which is often associated with Ni), that is unspoken. The Ni description I've heard is "trying to find a vocabulary for it". (And I might have the limited experience, because at least I prefer one form of N; while for the SJ's, it would be even less conscious, and they of course go with whatever is familiar and already seems to work).
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  9. #509
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uumlau View Post
    I really liked this post, OA.


    This is so close to being dead-on accurate. It only has one flaw, which you can see if you compare it to Si. Si references internally stored archetypes, too. However, Si doesn't CHOOSE them: they were created by experience.


    Similarly, Ni doesn't "choose" the perspective it perceives, as much as it might seem like it to others. Rather, think of both Si and Ni as libraries of experiences. Si stores the concrete, literal versions of those experiences, but doesn't tend to keep functional/purpose/meaning-based attributes of it. Ni stores a more functional/purpose/meaning-based version of experiences, but tends to lose track of the concrete specifics.

    Both Si and Ni can quickly pull up their respective libraries, and quickly rifle through the index to pull up the most relevant past experience.
    I don't mean a conscious, rational choice. But no one is perceiving all things at all times. There is a focus on some info over other info, whether we make a conscious decision about it or not. Certainly, this may be arbitrary for the Pi-dom, and they may experience it as just being aware, with certain things standing out over others (and generally, that's what perceiving is, right? A mental awareness that "sees" things as just being, almost unquestionably so; it's not a reasoned out conclusion. This is easiest to understand with Se of course). However, there is bias in every function, and so the ego is "choosing" what is perceived and what is not, in order to sustain itself. I'm sure it does not feel like a choice or any judgment, but it can appear that way.

    Pi doesn't exist with Je either, and the lines are not totally clear in reality. I think the J mindset is a combo of both Je and Pi, which is also why Ji is more part of a P mindset that judging in the way people think of Je. I was telling someone else in the "Ask an INFP" thread how as an INFP, I often deal with reality by responding to possibilities as they arise, so that I don't feel as if I am making decisions or applying value judgments at all. I understand how perceiving doesn't feel like it's choosing anything, but there is some filtering out going on.

    This is super obvious in Si-dom, who tend to focus on a sliver of reality, gaining mastery over it, and at times extrapolating from it to claim a grasp of all of reality (all introverts do this in some way, IMO). Their ego is limiting themselves to this sliver so as to not be threatened. It seems to me that Ni types can become quite narrow also, and this is when they can mistakenly apply their perceptions to something novel, making their intuitions dead wrong. The risk for the Pe type is opposite - to stay shallow, to jump from one thing to the next, because going too deep might prove to threaten the ego.

    So what Ni does is look at reality, e.g., at a problem, and immediately sees "what kind of problem" it is, pulls out the Ni-experience that relates to it, and it is nigh-instantly solved. (Just as if you'd asked Si about a fact, and the Si individual immediately recites the correct fact to you.)

    Ni doesn't remember facts. It remembers how to solve "that kind of problem" in a very abstract way. As you might notice, putting "that kind of problem" into more concrete terms is very difficult.
    But there is judgment inherent in that, even if it's not reasoned out but just "appears" as something obvious, as clear as the sky is blue. Still, there is a judgment of relevancy. Perhaps this is the influence of Je, but there is a filtering, and that to me is a choice of the ego (even if not a rational one for perceiving types).


    You are going to have more of an understanding of Ne than I do, but I don't think Ne chooses a perspective either.
    Certainly not consciously. Instead, some things loom with more potential than others. Possibilties seem to "emerge" on their own. You just become aware of them. They fascinate you. Etc... But I would be silly not to acknowledge that this is only a part of reality I choose to focus on, even if that choice is not conscious. Being aware that we, on some level, are choosing, is pretty powerful. It removes some of the grip of the ego, and that's also when we are able to appreciate that others are seeing and evaluating reality from stances that are just as valid.

    Perhaps the difference is that you are judging dom and I am perceiving dom? You always end up choosing what you look at and how you look at it, perhaps? A blindness of Ni doms is that we don't really feel like we're "choosing" anything, that it's just there, but it probably looks like a "choice" to others.
    Well of course I am a Ji-dom, but no, I don't consciously choose what I perceive that much either. The judgement for me comes more in the response, as I noted above. I generally feel as though I am just responding to reality as it unfolds. There's more of a helplessness there as an IxxP than with an ExxP, who seem to shape things as they unfold more. Ne-dom sort of merge with potential much as Se-dom do with objects they are manipulating (as if it were an extension of their body). My response is governed by an ideal model Fi has pre-constructed, which doesn't feel much like judgement either so much as recognizing what does or could resemble it (conceptually, not literally). Je-dom seem much more deliberate and to actually experience a categorical judgment.


    Again, the notion of "whatever it is they want it to be" is off. This is how it looks to others, not to oneself. What you are experiencing perhaps from other Ni types is that they appear to want to change whatever it is you believe to be true, and you're immediate thought is likely, "But that's reality. You don't get to change that."

    The reality is that they see a different reality than you do. They're looking at a different set of interconnections that you don't readily see, just as you see interconnections that Ni doms don't readily see.
    I agree with this....and that's related to what I'm saying above about the ego. When you realize the "reality" you see is not the whole of reality, then you know that you are "choosing" it on some level.

    I don't experience that with Ni-dom. People don't try and change what I believe to be true because I don't offer that up easily. Most of the time, people don't understand my premise, which is common for any introvert (being that its sourced internally and requires you to bring forth the same thing within someone vs offering external "proof"). What I experience with them is refusal to see a different perspective when they've "decided" that a certain one is the reality, and it often appears to be an interpretation that removes responsibility or error on their part. Of course, that is more common with INFJs, who are the Ni-dom I am usually complaining about :P.

    Ni doms don't "choose" that perspective that they apply. It's what they see. It is their reality. AND they don't often realize that other people don't look at the world that way. Self-awareness for an INTJ is when we realize that no, we aren't that smart, but rather we simply don't look at the world the way everyone else seems to. Most people don't look at the world and see a complex system of cause-and-effect that can be altered in fundamental ways. One surprise for me was that what most people view as static, I see as entirely flexible and changeable. Conversely, what most people view as flexible and changeable I see as almost-immutable law, e.g., analogous to the laws of physics.


    Interesting perspective, here. I think what you are encountering is the different visions of the world, again, which see different kinds of things as mutable/immutable.

    Quick and dirty function-theory version: To Ne/Si, the concrete is immutable, the abstract is mutable. To Ni/Se, the abstract is immutable, the concrete is mutable.


    More likely, circumstances changed (Se is mutable) which drew up a different Ni-experience-model-abstraction. To you, it looks like they just totally changed their mind, and don't even remember that you had just proven them wrong, for example. What really happened is that you believe there is only one context (Si is immutable), therefore the Ni dom just did a 180-degree logical reversal.

    My ENFP ex and I had some really weird arguments along these lines early in our relationship, until after an explanation of mine she realized, "Hey, waitaminute! You changed context. You're not even talking about what I'm talking about now!" To which I replied, "Yes. Exactly. Why wasn't that obvious before?"

    You might wonder how that fits into Ni being immutable. Ni is still immutable because the old context didn't just disappear. It still exists in abstract, but doesn't apply now in the concrete instance. If the context switched back, you'd hear the same arguments as before the original switch. Further, there can be kind of a "chaos theory" kind of effect: a slight change in circumstances can produce a radically different conclusion even when maintaining the same Ni-understanding. Physics and math are full of things like this, where the math doesn't change at all, but a slightly different input value produces a significantly different result.
    I understand this concept because Fi is much more like this, which is why it can appear inconsistent to others. It's highly dependent on context and not a fixed set of values as its erroneously made out to be (not unless you really funnel it down to those fundamental concepts which are not even able to communicate, as once they are given form, they are now dependent on something specific). I think that's the nature of introversion also, but depending on your function, it. Of course, it seems more natural to me that judgment is context specific rather than perspective, but I also see multiple perspectives in any context (so that I don't find the Ni perspective wrong usually, just not the only one, and I only want it acknowledged that other possibilities exist). I suppose they need to switch contexts for this, but I know there is a paradoxical aspect to Ni, and I guess that's acknowledging several contexts simultaneously (?).

    For me, Si is experiences as extremely negative or very frivolous (Feeling like the past reality is a pattern I cannot escape - I am doomed! Experiencing the sensory world romantically- everything is imbued with meaning, as if it has a personality), so that consciously I don't experience it enough as "me" to be able to explain it as if I own it. Both Pi functions are the hardest for me to grasp.

    As for @PeaceBaby 's example, I will not see the table as a concept in itself, but I will see it as embodying an idea that is more like a personality. Sure, physically, it's a table, but it can take on a different "attitude" depending on context. Of course, there is also the metaphorical aspect too - the table is less a symbol than able to be used as a parallel for something unrelated on the surface. It annoys the crap out of actual SJs if they can't see the parallels. For NFPs, this tends to come out poetically more than practically, but you also use it to adapt quickly to new contexts.
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

    INFP | 4w5 sp/sx | RLUEI - Primary Inquisitive | Tritype is tripe
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric B View Post
    That sounds like a pretty good description. (And I had been told of how the Ni perspective comes in handy for when a system is already in place and it needs to be improved in order to meet a particular goal, like streamlining and tossing out what's irrelevant and making things more efficient. Sounds like cartoon "robotic" science, like Dexter's "Ultrabot 3000", or the Twilight Zone episode about "inefficiency").
    Thanks.

    I'm trying to make sure I'm relaying correctly where the "invisible problems" come from, or what it really is. Ni is described as dealing in "unconscious" stuff, but then that word has other uses. N of both attitudes are called "unconscious", as is any introverted function, and of course undeveloped functions (e.g. "shadows"), and even a dominant function that becomes so "second nature", it too actually loses "consciousness" in a way. This is one thing that makes Jung hard to really grasp easily.
    This is one major spot where I disagree with Jung and Lenore on all the "access to the unconscious" descriptions. To give them due credit, I would say that the words really don't exist to describe it in the concrete way they describe all the other functions. (Which I would say is true for all the functions, which can be misconstrued because the terms describing them are often too concrete.) Ni isn't "access to the unconscious", it's just an unusual way of looking at the world. For the record, Nardi's descriptions in Neuroscience of Personality are very, very close to my understanding of Ni, and are the best descriptions of Ni in any published form (i.e., outside of forum discussions and the like).

    The "invisible problems" are the ones that are really obvious to Ni doms who are familiar or expert with a system, but no one else sees them. It's like an electrician looking behind a light switch and seeing frayed wiring. Most people don't look behind the light switch, and the light works, so the problem persists until a fire starts, at which point it is blamed on bad wiring after the fact. So I'm not saying it's 100% invisible to non Ni types. Given time and persistence, others can be taught to see the same thing, e.g., "remember to look behind the light switch", but it is never "obvious", and most other types cannot be bothered to look behind light switches, as it's too much work, while it's trivial for Ni doms.

    So I'm thinking that my "too good to be true" sense might be my [limited] experience of the "invisible problem". (Which you seem to be saying we don't sense at all). In other words, it's just a "hunch" (which is often associated with Ni), that is unspoken. The Ni description I've heard is "trying to find a vocabulary for it". (And I might have the limited experience, because at least I prefer one form of N; while for the SJ's, it would be even less conscious, and they of course go with whatever is familiar and already seems to work).
    The "too good to be true" sense is definitely similar to what Ni doms do, except to you, it's still this vague hunch that something is wrong. To an Ni dom, it's obvious that something is wrong.

    A recent example: a friend was talking about the Mythbusters episode that covered the bees lifting the laptop. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_12L_Dme8Vc is the original video. I watched this video and immediately knew it was fake. But it would take hours for me to explain HOW I knew it was fake, because there are years of experience with physics involved. Those years of experience develop an "intuition" of what is possible with physics. I understand concepts like lift, airflow, fluid dynamics, thermodynamics, chaotic processes and so on. All of these taken together convince me that the video is fake, the primary indicator being that there is no way that the laptop would hover so precisely. Forces have to be exactly in balance for that to work, or there has to be a credible dynamic equilibrium with a feedback mechanism to make it work. Drones and helicopters and harrier jets have a huge amount of engineering behind them to make them hover precisely.

    But to most other people without that expertise, the best they might get is a feeling of "too good to be true".

    Now, Ni does not equal "expertise" per se. Other types can be equally expert with engineering to spot the problem here. This is just an analogy to give you an idea of what it feels like. If you have enough knowledge, you "just know" it's fake, but the knowledge is so esoteric that you can't just way why you know without confusing everyone around you. This is how Ni feels.

    The Ni strength is being good like this with just about any complex system, given a fairly short time to study and understand it, because Ni naturally looks for the key functional components that might dictate failure or success. That's just what it does, without having to try very hard, just as Ti doms can just do logic in their heads without trying too hard, or Fi doms can read an individual's emotional state without trying too hard, or Si doms can recite their knowledge of a topic verbatim without trying too hard. But none of these introverted dominants can explain HOW they do what they do very easily. They just DO IT.
    An argument is two people sharing their ignorance.

    A discussion is two people sharing their understanding, even when they disagree.

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